In the Bottom of My Garden Andy Warhol
Find out more about Andy Warhol’s ‘In the Bottom of My Garden’ series, browse prints & editions for sale & view the works wanted by active buyers right now.
The In the Bottom of My Garden Series features Warhol’s illustrative art style with his ever-increasing move towards fine art at this time in his career. It was created and published by Warhol in 1956, comprising of 22 pages. It is in the form of a bound book, with hand-written lettering on the cover, completed by his mother, Julia Warhola.
According to Warhol’s friend and production designer, Charles Lisanby, In the Bottom of My Garden was based on Cicely Mary Barker’s children’s book Flower Fairies of Autumn. The inspiration for the title for In the Bottom of My Garden derives from the jolly story-telling song filled with wit There are Fairies in the Bottom of Our Garden by writer Rose Fyleman and composer Liza Lehmann. At the time the song was popularised by Beatrice Lillie, a gay icon much admired by Warhol.
Warhol, without musical instruments or a melody expresses the hilarious scenes inspired through hearing this amusing song. The result is a wildly imaginative theatrical account of child-like winged fairies and androgynous chubby putti cavorting with nature and animals, coupled with overtly sexualised imagery to some plates such as a fairy holding a cat with the provocative line “Do you see my pussy?” written in a cursive font to the lower right of the page.
Warhol decided to depict this book solely as offset lithographs with watercolour hand-colouring to convey the content of the volume. His approach and execution combined his blotted-line technique with individually hand coloured watercolour to most of the plates, while others were left in monochromatic black and white. By working with watercolour in selected areas and using a limited palette of just six vibrant basic colours the senses of childhood, simplicity and imagination is emphasised.
Warhol kept the production stages simple in a monographic process and costs low by enlisting the help of friends to help hand colour each sheet with watercolour. Prior to creating the bound books In the Bottom of My Garden and À la recherche du shoe perdu, Warhol had produced offset lithographs but previously not in colour. Therefore, these books are significant markers in his progressive development as an artist of the technicolour age.
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